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RUSH: It defies common sense what is happening in the NFL. There’s a headline today in the Green Bay newspaper that the Packers are prepared to defy their fans, the Packers players.

And you know something? That’s pretty much a good way to describe what is happening in this whole thing in the NFL. It’s the fans that are being defied. And I’ll give you a little heads up. I told Hannity, the NFL interview kind of — Snerdley said, “You really got emotional during that.” I didn’t start to cry, don’t think that. But what’s happening to the NFL rips my heart out. I don’t think the NFL knows who their audience is, or if they do they’re embarrassed of it.

But the NFL viewer, the average target marketing of the NFL, is not a white wine and brie sipping cheese eater. These are people that buy Ford F-150s and buy beer by the case. And it’s like the NFL’s trying to market to left-wing social justice warrior snowflakes and that’s not who’s watching the game and that’s not who’s gonna make the game. Those are the people that wish the game didn’t exist as it does. It’s amazing to watch this happen.

Everybody knows where the public opinion comes down on this, and they are going against it, and that is the corruption that the left brings to something. So we’ll get into that a little later. There’s a Thursday night game. It’s the Bears and the Packers in Green Bay tonight. And Aaron Rodgers, the quarterback, has asked all the fans to link arms. The fans don’t want to do this. The fans don’t want this stuff brought into the stadium. The fans don’t want to have a political test. They don’t have to pass or fail. They just want these guys to play football.

What the fans are paying to see, they’re not paying to see people diss the flag. And, by the way, everybody’s walking that back now ’cause they know they’re losing this on the PR side. “This is not disrespecting the flag. This is not disrespecting America.” Yes, it is. It’s about the NFL being used now to advance the leftist agenda. And the NFL itself is in target because the left doesn’t like it, period, because of what it stands for. It stands for much of what they don’t like. Strong, masculine, rugged individualism with unified team concepts, patriotism, love of country, uniquely American game.

You go to college campuses, folks, and they are now teaching courses on how to demasculinize men or demasculinate, demasculate men. They really are. We’ve mentioned it to you, I don’t know how many people remember, but masculinity is under assault just like white privilege is under assault, because white privilege and white men, in the broad picture, represent the scourge of this country. They’re the ones that got us into trouble. They’re the ones that did all the discriminating. They’re the ones that did all the bigotry. They’re the ones that stole all the money, so forth and so on.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: The NFL ticket sales have plummeted 17.9%. TV ratings are down 11%. Some advertisers are beginning to pull out now. We’ve all been there. But this is different. I mean, the league is allowing itself to be used as a tool to advance a political agenda. It just is. I said on the Hannity show today in the interview, which you’ve got to see tonight and tomorrow night, I said that I’m not sure the NFL really knows who its audience is. I think I know who they would like it to be.

They would like it to be fellow brie and white wine people and sophisticates, but the NFL target market audience, I mean, look who their advertisers are: Ford F-150, the leading culprit to climate change! And then pick your beer, they’re advertising. Not exactly a favorite of the white wine and brie crowd. But they’re allowing an in-your-face action. I said to Hannity, “Would you grant, if any of these players upset about police brutality or whatever, instead of wasting time protesting the flag during the pregame, would you allow ’em a half hour on your show to come address it?”

“Just call me!” he said. I said, “Why don’t they do that?” Why, instead, are they disrespecting the flag and taking a knee and all that in the pregame? Why? I don’t know why they think they’re doing it, but the fact that they are doing it is hurting the NFL. It is harming the NFL. And there are people who want that to happen. It’s too masculine. It’s too patriotic. It’s too rugged individualistic, too masculine.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: The NFL Stack. I’ve got to share this one with you. This is Reuters. You ready for this headline? “Senator Says Russian Internet Trolls Stoked NFL Debate.” Speaking of which, Jeh Johnson, who was the homeland security director for Obama is out — He testified today. Jeh Johnson testified today, told lawmakers he is unaware of any evidence showing cyber attacks affected voting in the 2016 presidential election.

Obama’s director of Homeland Security today said no evidence for the umpteenth time of any cyber attack in the 2016 election. And yet what is Mueller doing? Looking for it. There isn’t any. This from the Obama administration Homeland Security guy. But it doesn’t matter because Russia stole the election’s become something the left believes. Just like so many of these NFL guys really believe “hands up, don’t shoot.”

Don’t doubt me on that. They’re still worked up. They think Michael Brown was surrendering, had his hands up and was murdered in the back by a cop in Ferguson. You can’t blame ’em. The media continued to report that long after it was established that it didn’t happen, media they trust. And now this guy, the Russians are responsible for everything that went wrong with the Democrats, is what they think.

“A U.S. senator on Wednesday said Russian internet trolls, seeking to polarize Americans, helped fuel a debate ignited by President Donald Trump over whether NFL players should have the right to kneel during the national anthem. The assertion, made by Republican James Lankford, comes as congressional investigators probing Moscow’s alleged meddling in the 2016 presidential election are focusing on how Russian agents used social media to spread divisive political content.”

So the Russians are responsible for all these players taking a knee during the anthem. And a United States senator thinks so. This mission statement, I tell you who’s responsible for it, actually. Something called the bipartisan Alliance for Securing Democracy, but they are not bipartisan. They’re a bunch of leftists and they’re spreading this news around, the Russians are responsible for trolling the NFL and fans and causing all this to happen.

I mean, folks, when I see stuff like this, I lose faith. I get deflated a bit. How can sensible people believe this crap? And if they don’t believe it, why go out and say it anyway? I mean, I know politics, but, for crying out loud, the Russians are responsible for what’s happening right now in the NFL?

Green Bay Packers’ National Anthem Plans Continue to Rile the Fans.” This is from the Green Bay Press Gazette. “A request by Green Bay Packers players for fans to join them in a show of unity during the national anthem before their game Thursday apparently did little to calm the debate.

“Packers fans on Wednesday continued to blast the NFL, the team and players for what they perceive as showing disrespect for the nation, the flag, the military or the national anthem by sitting, kneeling, remaining in the locker room or locking arms during the national anthem. Supporters say players are peacefully exercising their free speech rights on the best stage available.”

Nothing about free speech here, and it’s not the best stage available. If they’ve got a legitimate grievance, go to Chicago and demand a meeting with Rahm Emanuel and ask him why in the hell there are so many black murders in that city. And not by the cops. They’re not advancing. They are dividing people! Standing for the anthem is not political. Not standing, kneeling, that’s what’s political. The anthem doesn’t get politicized by standing and showing respect for the flag. Doing the opposite is what is divisive and political.

The game has been hijacked. The game has been hijacked by people who do not intend it goodwill. The game is being hijacked by people who intend to harm. And the league and the owners seem to be right in there with it. You know, Trump’s right that NFL owners are scared. He said they’re scared of the players. It’s not they’re scared of the players. The owners are caught, in their minds, between a rock and a hard place. They’re afraid of that if they don’t support the players, the players will strike or not play the game and then that’s not good.

They’re willing to roll the dice that you’ll get over this as a fan after a while. And it’s gonna die down after a while, and it may take some weeks or months but at the end of the day things are gonna get back to normal and everything’s gonna be fine. But they don’t think that’ll happen if they side with the fans over the players. It’s not gonna be the same. Nothing is ever the same after the left corrupts it. Nothing is ever the same after the left gets their hooks in it. Nothing is ever the same after the left politicizes it.

That’s exactly what’s happening here. And nobody’s… The only people resisting it are the fans, and they’re being mocked and criticized and laughed at and made fun of. You really stop and think here what they’re doing. Taking a knee, linking arms for a couple of minutes in the pregame is supposed to do what? Is gonna let people out of jail? Is it going to raise consciousness about cops killing black people? What’s supposed to happen? What’s happening is the NFL is being hijacked.

If your intention, if you’re a leftist activist — or not even an activist. If you’re a leftist who thinks the NFL poses a problem to your view of what American culture ought to be, what would you do? You would find a way to depopularize it. How’d you do that? You’d find a way to make the fans mad. You’d find a way to keep the fans out of it. And they know who the fans are. They know the fans are patriotic, love the anthem, the ceremonies and tradition. Do things to tick those fans off so they stay away.

It’s working like a charm. The fans staying away, the fans wanting refunds on Sunday Ticket, the fans not going to games, the fans not watching on TV? That’s working exactly as intended. Do the NFL and players know this or not? I think it’s just the latest example of a gigantic corporate entity not understanding who its customers are, not understanding its base, not understanding who its fans are. I think it’s patently obvious. They are fans. The fans of the NFL are not a bunch of social justice warriors.

They’re not a bunch of college snowflakes. The fans of the NFL are the people that make it hum, the people that pay the bills, the people that spend all the money to go to the game, watch the game on TV or do whatever. They are not militant agitators on the left. That’s not who’s there. The league obviously thinks that that’s who their fans are, that those the fans that must be appeased, that we must let the flag be disrespected as a show of … unity? How asinine! That’s what’s happening. It makes no sense.

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